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      Get Smart on the Web   09/16/2016

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Guest Confused and weary

Texas friends with advice with kids??

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Guest Confused and weary

Hello all,

I will keep my name as confused and weary, just in case...and I will contribute as much information as I feel is necessary. How my cousin relationship came about will be frowned upon in its own aspect, but I feel it is necessary to include all information leading up to the question. 

I have been in a relationship for 13 years, married for 7 of those years. My husband and I have had problems for about 11 of those years where I felt alone and unwanted. He would refuse me, push me off of him, and make me feel...well..a lot of things emotionally. We have 2 children who are now 12 and 8 and about a year ago my cousin and I reconnected via text. 

I made the decision to follow my heart and had an affair.  In the beginning it was a way to fix what was missing while allowing my kids to remain in what they knew as a "perfect family" status. They never knew what was going on as I never let the hurt show to my boys. 

In August of 2016 I tried one more time to get my husband to see the problem he so blatantly ignored and told him his family was at risk.  It didn't end well as it was ignored again. I let the hurt go that month which allowed my cousin to gain access to my heart in December.  It became harder and harder to be apart from each other, time was our biggest battle, but we both fell very much in love with each other.  We are (half) first cousins technically as his mother has a different father than mine through blood...but on paper she shares the same maiden name as my father. 

So,  here we are at the messy part...my husband installed a spy app on my phone in may of 2017 and had all of my text forwarded to his phone among other things. ..our secret was no secret anymore. At this point, there aren't many in the family that do not know. Some have been accepting and some haven't.  

My husband wants to remain together seeing this as a wake up call, but it isn't a secret anymore that I fell in love with my cousin. He wants to work through it, but when I talk about leaving to follow my heart, in his anger spurts he threatens my youngest son against me. My oldest has another father from when I was young (19). I know he wouldn't hesitate to use this against me as well to take my oldest. 

My fear is losing my children, with the law in effect I was told that the chances of this happening pretty much gave the men all rights to my children...and not to mention,  if they pushed for it...jail time doesn't sound appealing to me either.  It's very scary. 

I love my boys very much and couldn't survive without them...we are extremely close and although I did what I did as an adult, it didn't make me any less of a mother to them. They are my priority...and if that means sacrificing my heart for theirs then it isn't even a question.  I never wanted them hurt, but am afraid of so many things.  

1. Them being taken from me

2. Them being shunned because of loving who I did and my shunning would be their loss as well with family 

3. Their impact in school when it got around town and what other kids would say. I don't want them to have to defend my relationship. 

4. Them judging me when it was brought to their attention or when other people turned them against me. 

5. Them having to see mommy behind bars should it be brought to court and won.

There are many more fears, but their well being is my main concern. I don't want to hurt them in any way. Has anyone else been through this in the state of Texas where children were involved? Where an Ex found out or so on? Where it was used against you to obtain custody?  

I called the child support office anonymously and asked similar questions and she said it would be grounds for them to obtain custody being it an unstable and unhealthy relationship...and asked me if I was aware of the law. It wasn't good news that I heard.  

I know in my head the best thing for them would be to accept my husband's forgiveness and try to make it work for the boys...but my heart keeps battling me bc I'm very much in love with my cousin. 

The constant battle is really taking a toll on me, my fears are with me all day and even in nightmares when I sleep. My children are ripped from me in various forms while I sleep and I know it is my fears playing out. I have been physically sick over this whole situation. And always being the "good girl" and following the rules/laws... committing a third degree felony bc I fell in love doesn't sit well with me either honestly.  It scares the s#!t out of if I can be frank. What point would it be if I received 10 years in prison and missed 10 years of my children's lives. It's heartbreaking to think about. They are my everything.  

I know I have committed adultery along with loving my cousin.. just know I'm not a terrible person. I stayed because of my boys, and I would be lying to say the entire marriage was miserable.  We have always been good friends, just not being wanted in a sexual way does something to you..especially when his excuse was that he didn't want himself because of self worth yet openly admitted to using his hand while watching porn during the 10 and a half years of pushing me off of him physically or turning me down. So none of it makes any sense to me. There are justifications I gave myself to be guilt free with this. It was never suppose to be leaked out, but here we are tangled in this mess and the fears are tearing me up inside. Any information or advise would be greatly appreciated. . I'm hoping others have been in similar situations involving young children. 

I'm sorry for the long rant...I'm just at a loss. 

Thank you, 

Confused and weary 

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That sounds like a really tough situation. Have you spoken with a lawyer? If I were you, that would be the first thing I would do. What you are going through is exactly why the Texas law is so concerning. I can't personally relate to your story, but I'm so sorry to hear about it; people should never use children to threaten each other, and the fact that having a relationship with your cousin is a felony is so broken. Best of luck. 

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Miss Price has given you the important information:  talk to an attorney.  

For your emotional distress, I recommend a book that may help you deal with this very difficult situation:  NASTY PEOPLE:  HOW TO STOP BEING HURT BY THEM WITHOUT STOOPING TO THEIR LEVEL by Dr. Jay Carter.  It gives you positive information on dealing with bullies.

We are here to give you support - if you want, send me a personal message.

You have people here who are on YOUR side.

HUGs

Nat

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i'm assuming this is a first cousin? if he's any more distantly related then that will change things. back when i married my cousin, the laws were different in texas and even first cousins could legally marry. but my ex didn't give me any problems anyway. i don't think (even now) he really gives much of a crap about being with his kids, (or now grandkids)

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Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to reach out. It is much appreciated. My cousin has spoken to a lawyer, but we all know they just defend a situation...and a judge is king in his court. We could get a judge who once had a crush on his cousin when he was young and sympathizes, or (my fear ) the opposite who had view much like the rest of the Texas government who views it as morally wrong. The unknown and the risks at hand are what employs so much fear. This isn't a slap on the wrist. My cousin has a daughter who is 6 and he already battles her mother who isn't someone who does not follow court ordered custody rules. My ex husband and I were young.  I've never kept him from seeing his son. We swap weekends, and even have mutual gatherings. He's always been invited..we were young and had a lot of growing up to do, but have remained friends (even his new wife) and share my oldest with no fighting. It was important to me.  My concern with his ex wife is that she will use this to her advantage as well as my children being ripped from me. Falling in love with your cousin is no easy feat in society already as many of you know. Adding kids to the mix is even more trying. I cannot have anymore children so passing on genetic disorders is ruled  out as something to fight against.  Everything I fear is with the children who are already here. 

LadyC,  may I ask how old your children were and how they took it? My cousin seems to think the kids will forget him being my cousin, but I know this is not the case. My boys are 12 and 8 and I pride myself in how Smart they are. 

I opened the link posted on a previous thread about the man in Michigan on trial for having sexual intercourse with his consenting cousin. He has a bad rap sheet under his belt already, but no physical proof was merited other than a phone call to the police. The lawyer here stated that physical proof would be needed, however it proves otherwise in that particular case. 

We are both having a hard time letting go of this as we are both going through our grief stages.  We are sad, then angry because it isn't fair, depressed, and a lot of ups and downs. 

My father has an odd way of viewing things as far as one deviant act doesn't make an exception for another.  In his eyes, I would be the same as a child molester because he all deviant acts ate grouped as one. He is a manic depressant and was molested as a child along with his sister siblings. The family has never been close because they haven't been able to let go of their past and it depicts their future. I share this to help you understand why he views things this way. His views are the same as Texas Penal Code. We both would be a registered sex offender if proven guilty and that is NOT what I am. I am a 32 year old adult female and he is a 38 year old adult male. This was consensual among adults. 

Unfortunately when divorce occurs, it is one or the other that wants out of the marriage. Rarely is it mutual.  My husband went through his grief stage as well when he realized he was losing his family. He begs me to stay, forgives me, tells me he knows what he did by hurting me was wrong over the years, tells me it can make us stronger, but I take full responsibility for my actions too. It was unintentional, but it happened. My heart belongs to my cousin and that isn't a secret anymore either. Again, I share this because although I agree with the bullying as it was used against me for me to stay, I also understand I hurt him too. He didn't see anything wronged even though I made it clear, he was perfectly content and never looked up until this. He calls it an eye opener and promises to never go back to the way he was. He honestly has been kind and understanding after the anger wave left and I know it is not deserved on my part. I was always taught two wrongs do not make a right. I never wanted to be an adulterer, it was never a tactic for revenge. :(

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And yes LadyC. We are first cousins. Technically half as his mother has a different biological father than mine, but it is stated in the law that half first cousins are included. 

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Let me say again Krissy how sorry I am that you are in this situation. Being on my first marriage with my first cousin and unable to imagine myself with anyone else, I am a big believer in the sanctity of marriage, but I also know that life is long and messy, and we get ourselves into situations we couldn't have foreseen, and don't see good way out of. My cousin/husband was married before, and I had a three year engagement, and was lucky to get perspective before we married, or had children. I'm glad your cousin has spoken with a lawyer, but I know that's not the answer to everything, or even much comfort considering what you are going through, and the uncertainty of what you would face in a court. There are no easy answers, I know. Are you and your husband still talking? Relying on the courts would be expensive, stressful, and potentially have an awful outcome for your whole family and you especially, as you are clearly well aware. It seems to me that the best outcome happens through communication. Do you think that's a possibility?

Please do keep us updated here, and let us know how we can support you. If I had gone through with that three year engagement and lived in Texas, I can easily imagine myself in your position (my ex-fiancee just finished law school, which would have been a nightmare, and I'm 31). I'm happy to talk to you here, and you are welcome to message me privately. You are not alone, and any system that would call you a sex offender for loving your cousin is absolutely wrong. 

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my daughters adored mark. they were 11 and 12 when we married. when we told them we wanted to get married, they asked all the important questions and we gave them all the factual answers. within a half hour they were getting excited about wedding plans with us. but i'd been divorced 7 years by that time. the kids hadn't ever really had that family unit growing up. you're in an entirely different situation. you are still married to their dad. 

ok, so let's get to the nitty gritty. some of what i'm about to say is going to probably be difficult to hear. part of it may (hopefully) be encouraging to hear. i hope you'll at least read all of what i have to say before writing any of it off. everything i have to say is spoken from experience. and my experience is very similar to yours in many ways.

you have a husband who apparently loves you very much and is willing to work things out in spite of your infidelity. around here, most of us feel the same way... marriage trumps cousin relationships. you have a good grasp of what you're facing. what you don't have a clear grasp on is that when you were trying to convince your husband to see the problems in your marriage and that his family was at risk, YOU had become one of those problems in your marriage, YOU had put your family at risk, and YOU were expecting HIM to do all the changing. girl, it doesn't work that way.

i'm not trying to beat you up. i'm just pointing out a painfully obvious truth that you are going to have to wrap your head around going forward. whatever wrongs he had committed by ignoring you and making you feel unloved have been matched by you. you're even. so you have got to quit keeping score. every text, every email, every private message, every kiss, every whispered "i love you" and every moment you spent in an intimate embrace, clothed or unclothed, with another man, have leveled the playing field of emotional abuse or neglect. and all that spying your husband did is well within his rights. (it also indicates he knew very well there were problems in your marriage...) you made a vow to be faithful, you broke that vow. (so did he, when he looked at porn.) had the situation been reversed, you'd have been spying on him too, so you have to let that whole thing go. yep, you have to get over it. 

here's the thing. you need to make a decision whether to stay in your marriage or not. but while you're making that decision, you need to break off ALL CONTACT with your cousin and put forth an effort into trying to reconnect with the man that you once loved enough to promise 'now and forever' to. and you need to make a sincere effort to do that... not for a week or a month, but for about a year. because it's going to take that long to get your emotions sorted out after breaking off your affair. if after a year or so you decide that you just can't rekindle the love and can't keep your vows, or you can't rebuild your husband's trust, then you need to be honest with your husband and file for divorce. at that point you'll have had your affair behind you long enough that maybe you'd retain custody if the battle ensued. 

you're right that if you were to pursue your heart's desire right now, you'd probably lose everything, including your children. you worry about hurting them, though... but don't realize your choices have already hurt them. so if you want to do right by your boys, you need to start putting them first. which means you end your affair and cut off all contact. don't  think you can continue to 'be friends'... if you don't cut contact you can never put a sincere effort into your marriage, and you'll be shortchanging your sons... and your husband... and ultimately, yourself.. 

for the record, i don't think you're a bad person. i think you are a woman who was desperately lonely and alienated from your husband because of his addiction to porn. been there, done that. only my husband was addicted to drugs, which fed his addiction to porn, which made me want nothing to do with him. eventually he got clean, and gave up both drugs and porn, and while our marriage improved (and we became best friends again), it took years for me to build the kind of trust that resulted in any type of physical desire. and frankly, i couldn't have done it without my faith in God. He is the one that brought about ALL the good changes in my marriage. and listen, i spent ten years wondering if it was even worth staying... but because i trusted God, i felt i needed to stay. and God didn't let me down. i now have the marriage of my DREAMS! i couldn't ask for a better husband, a more loving and attentive lover, a more entertaining companion, a more helpful partner. he's everything i had ever wanted in a husband. and if i hadn't stayed with him and trusted God to restore our marriage, i'd have had to start all over again. and trust me, no matter how you think things will be different if you start a new life with your cousin, it won't be. because we all have this human nature to let contentment turn to complacency, and complacency to turn into boredom, which turns into dissatisfaction, which turns into looking for something new and exciting to make you feel wanted again.

now... this next bit applies to the "if it all fails" after a year of no contact with your cousin... has your husband adopted your oldest child? because if he is not the legal father by adoption, then he stands very little chance of ever winning custody of him. that's not to say he wouldn't win custody of the son you share, but the courts are not going to award custody to someone who has no legal claim in the first place. see what i'm saying? my ex once used that same threat to manipulate me with my daughters... not having anything to do with my cousin, mind you, but an entirely different matter. i wanted to tell my oldest the truth about her paternity. but i was fearful that he might make good on his threats and fight for custody of our shared daughter and that maybe a judge would not want to separate the girls. of course, slight difference in your situation again, my ex was the legal but not biological father of my oldest. i'm sure now that i could have won had i proven he wasn't the father, but at the time i was just too young and too scared to even try.  

these days it's all behind me. my daughters are both grown and have families of their own. between the two of them i have five grandchildren. my oldest daughter and her family are currently living with us while they transition from military to civilian life... and at the moment, they have all left the house for the day and i have some peace and quiet. so i'm going to say goodbye to you, turn on the tv and enjoy a movie. :)

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for the record, i only just now finished reading your second post... which makes some of what i wrote sound like i wasn't paying attention. sorry. :(

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MissPrice: I appreciate all of you kind words and feedback. Having people understand what you are going through and taking the time to reach out on an "outside" basis is so very helpful. I am so happy for you that you were able to go forth with the person that was your "happy", and I would be lying if i didn't say that i was a little envious. I also am a believer in marriage (even though it may not seem that way because of my actions). Honestly, when thinking ahead; one of my biggest fears was not being married to my cousin and what that meant for us on a couples basis. My brain seems to think so far ahead of the current situation.. what if something happened and we were together? If we were not married, I would have no rights in a medical situation should it be needed, or vice versa if something happened to me. Everything about my nature is a caregiver. I want to give everything I can to a person that i love, I will give until there is nothing left. That was a huge importance to me. When you are "with" someone, you want the good and bad that comes along with it. I want to be by the person I love and take care of them, I want them to know that my love goes further than "bedroom status" and showing that by being there for someone, means through the nitty gritty as well.  

My husband and I are speaking, and living in the same household still. Friendship was never as issue between the two of us; but a friendship (room mate situation) was more or less what we had for the majority of our 13 years together. He has let a lot of things go as he wants to rebuild what we had, but I on the other hand am a true Taurus and have been fighting it. I am learning not to lash out at him, but still my emotions tend to be all over the place. When I said he was being "kind and understanding", this is what I meant by it. Because i am angry that I cannot follow my heart, It has been called out that I have been talking to him with less than a respectful manner to put it nicely. I am working on this. I know lashing out at him isn't going to help anything. It has made it more stressful honestly. If we never had a lot of things, we did have communication and respect in how we spoke to each other. My oldest knows there is something going on because he overheard some things when everything was fresh, but fighting in front of my boys was always a big no-no for me. I have sheltered them from so many things. My youngest is oblivious even now. I had a grown up talk with my oldest answering any questions and calmed his emotions. I didn't feel like leaving him in the dark was best, but kept it age appropriate as well. 

 

Confused and weary

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LadyC: Please do not worry about hurting my feelings or anything of the nature. Any and all advice is welcomed. You speak truth and for this i am grateful. I do not want someone to sugar coat the situation. You ladies have been amazing and having the ability to reach out to someone who is looking in from the outside has been comforting. This site has become my outlet. First off, I would like to say that I am happy that your children were so accepting, it was what i was hoping for with my boys should the time have come. I also understand that i am still married to their dad which makes it harder for them to understand, even more so when they never knew there was a problem in the marriage. It was a shock factor for my oldest just that there was a problem alone. Just to clerify, I was not planning on leaving one relationship to jump into another with the intent on my boys just accepting it. My boys and I would have lived together (my cousin would have remained in his house) and our relationship would have been kept a secret until they adjusted well enough and time was able to heal the split alone...or at least that was the plan. 

My husband says he loves me yes. Unfortunately, I am still asking the question on how you love someone and hurt them for so long. For 11 and a half years, I was rejected in so many ways. I am a very sexual person, but along with that comes a very loving person as well. Being a lover is not just about the physical intimacy, but the emotional intimacy that is wrapped up with it that was craved. I did love him, I wanted him, I needed him and I continued to "try" and reconnect often. Even through the hurt of being rejected I still tucked away my pride and pushed for more. When you are physically pushed off of someone and hit the floor (mid kiss) it truly damages a little piece of you each time. Several times I was physically pushed off of him, told no, denied, so much so that it made me ashamed of myself. For a time, I was so humiliated that he would walk in while I was changing clothes and i would hide myself and cry begging him to leave. This was many years ago. The spans of "no connection sexually or intimately) was not just short runs. It started with around 6 month spans and this is every year. The longest was 10 months. When I say spans... here is what would happen every time. I would hit a breaking point where I went into hysterics after the 6,8, or 10 month span where I broke down and cried asking what was wrong with me that i was so unwanted. One time it was even said " well we will just go have sex if that will make the fight stop." Just in a not so nice fashion. Ironically, he had justified my biggest fear. When things calmed down and he gave in, I did not feel loved or wanted, I felt like a sympathy lay to stop the fight. The emotion was still lacking, the effort and over time, it takes a toll on your heart. It was not like it was "fixed for a while" either. The new "span" started directly after the one or two times of his trying to "fix" things. Like I told him, there are only 12 months in a year. This wasn't short breaks in what could be called "dull" moments. Eventually, over time, the pain turns to scars. 

I fully understand and take responsibility for myself becoming one of the problems with my choices. I am not discounting that for a second, which is why we keep going round and round. In order to have no guilt, above are the reasons why. The scars were still there and with time, this is what the adoration was replaced with. Hurt than ran deep. I know no good comes out of an affair. Every person with common sense is fully aware of the risks at hand, but watching my p's and q's became harder as emotions became stronger with my cousin. The reason for him going through my phone was because in month 9 of the 10 months he actually came to me trying to start things one morning. When he rolled to my side of the bed, I got up and walked out. I hadn't pushed for anything from him in all this time, and at this point, I didn't want it because my heart was somewhere else. Letting the hurt not eat me up anymore is what allowed someone else in, and I cannot even begin to explain how much they were "in". I have never in my life felt so loved, so cherished, so wanted, so adored. I mirrored his love because when someone loves you, you do everything in your power to ensure they feel it back. Time was our worst enemy. Always. There was never enough of it, there were so many stolen moments, you're right. It was the simplicity of things such as even sitting next to him in the truck while we drove and having a hand on his leg, or his hand in mine. I had found someone who told me that he loved me so many times in one day (Have I told you lately how much I love you), but he could have never said it, and I would have felt it in the way he looked at me, touched me, held me, and had to have me close by his side. Just writing this the tears are running down my cheeks. The hardest thing is trying to let go of that feeling. It goes against everything in your nature to let go of what made you the happiest. 

I am 32 and am tired of my family telling me that what I was feeling wasn't love. I am fully aware of the differences in love and lust. Yes, I lusted after him as well, but it was because the love was so strong. I also understand the "new" feeling and we spoke about that was well. He even mentioned that having to "hide" things in front of the kids could have kept the spark alive...and that life gets in the way of things and we have both learned things over the years, so once a month he said we needed to vow to make alone time to go somewhere or so on. To ensure that it kept the love alive and not forgotten with all the dealings of life. In the beginning I said it could never be anything other than it was, but in the end, I found myself believing that it was indeed possible. I started planning ahead and dreaming big along with him and even was excited along with being scared of living on my own. I never thought something like not having to share a closet with my clothes and shoe addiction sounded so appealing. These were things that I would tell myself to help through the fear. I am a true Taurus and life changes are not my strong point. There was a lot to have to deal with emotionally that I battled myself along side of the other things falling apart around me. Being a Taurus, I also repress everything in attempt to deal with it. So again, thank you for letting this be my out for letting things off of my chest. 

Although there was no guilt in the affair, now I am harboring so much guilt for even being here in my marriage while my cousins heart and mine suffer. The guilt never came from being with someone else outside of my marriage, but now because my husband wants me to stay if that makes any sense. Doing this is breaking myself, but breaking the man that I am in love with. This is eating me up inside. It literally tears me apart. I essentially am hurting the one that I love, when I know too well what that hurt can do to a person inside. I had missed a huge part of myself and my cousin allowed me to find myself again. I will be forever grateful to him, but everything inside of me is screaming to show him how grateful I am with the rest of our lives. I think it is worse because this was not a mutual decision, but a forced one. It always makes it harder. You want to fight it more. 

My husband did not adopt my oldest but has made comments earlier on that when my ex finds out he will fight for his son too because it is "wrong" what is being done. The only way he would have known is if he was told. He never said he would, but it was insinuated. When the hurt and anger left, he had calmed down and he said he would not say anything, but it is hard to trust those words when they were already spoken. He wanted to fix things between us at this point, so in my mind he is going to "play nice" with words. If I chose to leave, it may be a different story. I understand that is fear talking, but the fear will remain since it was brought up. I know that time heals, but I fear this as well. Not only do I fear what I will become, but what it will do to my cousin. This will change both of us, and I do not think it will change us for the good, even if/when I could try to start fixing my marriage, the guilt eats me up even thinking about it. I don't know how to let my husband touch me because it is not the person that I want touching me. Also, I have been slapped down so many times, it is hard not to forget that. All of the sudden my husband is what he calls "needing me now more than ever" and it is confusing because of the things above mentioned, but the fact that I was so unwanted before, it truly bothers me. All of the sudden he has a "drive" and makes his arousal "known" and i get angry. I do NOT want it. I do NOT understand it either. How nothing I had done before effected him, but now that I am not doing anything to entice the situation, he is having "uncontrollable" urges. I honestly straight up asked him if he was "getting off" to this. I have had a mean tongue through a lot of things, but again, have tried hard not to lash out. It was not so much to hurt him intentionally, I guess more so on the confusion of being "wanted" all of the sudden, but me not being on the same page. My heart is still elsewhere. 

I wrote a book and published it on Kindle in Ebook form in hopes to have some financial stability to stand on my own two feet. I know things do not happen over night, and i am still pushing the book to be seen as best I can, but this was me preparing back in January. I am a stay at home mom, and I have always felt trapped because of this. I have worked, even owned my own business, but where we live now is literally in the sticks and finding a job worth something is trying at times. I am currently looking hard, not only for focus to be put forth elsewhere, but to be able to put money back should it not work out. While he is begging me to stay, I told him I needed time to get some emotions under control and I was unsure if this could be fixed. I will at least be smart about it this time and start with the ability to stand on my own two feet should it not work out in the long run. I am very much a people person anyway and truly do miss the interaction between adult humans...although my goats are good listeners. lol. I have faith that the book will go somewhere. Book two was started, but with everything going on, it was halted because I was not feeling it at the moment. Hopefully soon I will be able to go on another writing streak. Sorry for the long posts on here, but I do love to write. :)

Again, I want to thank you for chatting back and forth, it has done wonders being able to get things out. Sometimes it takes an outsiders perspective on things. Believe me though, everything that has been mentioned, I have thought about many many times myself as well. I am no saint to the situation, but it took so much for me to get to this point as well, and thank you for at least understanding from a woman's point of view. I will keep chatting as long as ya'll will allow. :) 

 

Maybe I should change my name to:

Exhausted and Mentally drained. haha

p.s with these dark circles and bags.. I am starting to look like Uncle Fester 

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Krissy

My earlier advice to get a copy of Nasty People  is even more important after reading your story.  Your husband is a "control freak" NOT what I would call a husband in any way.  Controlling a person is NOT a sign of love at all.  You are obviously a caring person but you cannot "fix" him.  He doesn't want that but to keep you under his thumb.  You are a victim.  I've been there and I know what I am talking about.  You can't "fix"  the marriage because it isn't really a marriage. He keeps you in bondage.

Do keep on writing - I want to read your books!  Your desire to stand on your own feet is very positive.  

The Nasty People book helped me to become a positive happy person.  When I found it I was in a "marriage"  - he didn't like me as a positive person so he left and I DO NOT MISS HIM!!!  LOL

HUGS

Nat

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